What No One Tells You About Reentering the Work Force

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After my second child was born, I decided to leave the corporate world, stay home with my kids and start a few small businesses. I was scared about this new adventure in my life but also extremely excited for being given the opportunity to be able to stay home and raise my kids while also making a small income. My goal was to stay home with my girls until the youngest graduated Kindergarten and after that time I would reenter the workforce. Little did I know that I would end up having a 3rd daughter 5 years after having my 2nd child. This unexpected blessing caused me to be away from the corporate world for longer than expected, which in turn, made me realize there was a lot that I did not expect when re-entering the workforce.

Reentering the workforce is not always easy. Here is what no one tells you.


During the time I was a stay at home mom, I relished every moment that I had with my girls. I made sure their needs were met and that I guided them and prepared them for school and life. In addition to taking care of my kids and my house, I created and built 3 small but successful businesses. I’ve always been a go-getter and I always succeed at everything that I do.

Before I left the corporate world, I worked for an insurance company and after only 4 years I entered into management. Throughout this time, I managed a team of over 20 associate, was responsible for the quality service of the entire call center, in addition to a variety of other positions. With that said, even though I had been away from the corporate world for 10 years, raising my kids and running my small businesses, I was not prepared for what no one tells you about re-entering the workforce.

  1. Everything is online. From job postings to job applications, to hiring status, it’s all online.
  2. Looking for a job takes over your entire world. I had 3 job search applications on my phone, in addition to a few more job alert sites that would email me and send me text messages every day with new jobs that were ‘my perfect match’. I became obsessed with the ‘perfect match’ job notifications and would study each one in detail before deciding if it really was the perfect job for me.
  3. On 99.9% of the applications that I submitted to companies before a human would look at my application, a computer would decide if it was good enough for a human’s eyes. If it was good enough, then my application would be forwarded to a human but if it wasn’t I would receive a standardized rejection email.
  4. With most big companies there are different interview stages. These stages consist of the initial application process, most often a ridiculous test that you can do at home when it fits your schedule, at times a recorded video interview, a phone interview with a recruiter and then one to two face to face interviews. The further you get in the interview process the better. At times, it could take you 3 months to get hired or find out that you are rejected.
  5. ‘We will contact you either way”, are common words that are told to you after you have a face to face interview. These words are not always true.
  6. Companies expect you to give specific ‘work experience’ examples, so be ready and consider making up some scenarios and memorizing them. From my experience, most companies did not want to hear examples of my small business experiences.
  7.  In my opinion, from my experience, 99.9% of the companies I applied to did not consider or appreciate the small businesses that I created as valid or useful job history.
  8. ‘We’ve decided to hire someone with more recent experience.” Those are words that I heard a lot. I always thought how dumb these words sounded because ‘recent’ doesn’t mean that person will be better and dedicated.
  9. If your application is approved by the computer be ready to take an online test. This test could be a personality test, which in my opinion has ridiculous questions or a test that grades you on reading comprehension. These tests are normally timed and can be done at home.
  10. I didn’t know just how bad rejection sucks. In addition, the people around me, my family, and the few friends that knew I was searching for a job didn’t know how much the rejection was affecting me. It’s a horrible feeling that could potentially change your mood for a period of time and throw you in a slight depression.

After leaving the corporate world for a period of time it can be extremely difficult, time-consuming, stressful and heartbreaking during your job search. You know your abilities and struggle with why no one else does. You become consumed with searching for a job that you push people away and avoid certain everyday tasks like cleaning and cooking dinner. In addition, every time you try and talk to friends or family, they say ‘Don’t stress out, the right job will come your way.” It frustrates you when you hear this but it is true. If you are straight and narrow, which basically means you do not have a criminal record and if you are professional then you will eventually be offered a job. It takes time and is truly not good for your mental well being but it will happen.

Be sure you know what to expect if you are going to re enter the work force after being out of it for a period of time like I was.

After leaving the corporate world for a period of time it can be extremely difficult, time-consuming, stressful and heartbreaking during your job search. Here is what you need to know about reentering the workforce.

Comments

  1. This is so extremely true!! I have tried explaining this to my own friends and family and they don’t understand. Though it is hard I wouldn’t give up those early years with my kids for nothing though.
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  2. It is just awful how running a small business isn’t considered experience in the eyes of the corporate interview. Just ridiculous. This is very eye opening. I haven’t exited the work force but I may one day if we have more kids or if it gets hard to keep my job with my husband’s military career moving us around.

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